• Home
  • /
  • Rugby
  • /
  • Paul O'Connell Captains A Strong Ireland Team In His Final Home International

Paul O'Connell Captains A Strong Ireland Team In His Final Home International

Paul O'Connell Captains A Strong Ireland Team In His Final Home International
By Conor O'Leary
Share this article

Paul O'Connell will play his final game for Ireland on home soil this weekend. The Limerick talisman leads a strong Irish side set to face Wales in the final game before Schmidt decides on his final 31-man squad.

Luke Fitzgerald is given the chance to impress at centre - showcasing his versatility and giving himself a chance of making the squad. He's joined in the backline by returning frontliners Conor Murray, Johnny Sexton, Robbie Henshaw, and Rob Kearney. Keith Earls and Dave Kearney have been given a chance on the wings to stake their claim - whilst Felix Jones will get a run from the bench.

Tommy Bowe, Andrew Trimble, Gordon D'Arcy, Fergus McFadden, Michael Bent, and Jack Conan will all play for their provinces this weekend.

In the forwards, Peter O'Mahony returns to the team and joins Jordi Murphy and Jamie Heaslip in the back row. Devin Toner is rested to give Iain Henderson a chance to partner Paul O'Connell. Interestingly Donnacha Ryan has been given the nod over Dan Tuohy on the bench.


At tighthead, Marty Moore trained today but isn't deemed ready to play. Schmidt said that Moore trained fully, and could be ready - but Nathan White's impressive cameo against Scotland earns him a start whilst Tadhg Furlong has proven his fitness and could make his debut off the bench.

Schmidt had some positive words to say about Healy's recovery saying that he wouldn't rule it out that he would get 20 minutes in against England in the final warm up game. Schmidt did mention that he thinks it's vital that he brings a prop that can play both sides of the scrum. This may favour Michael Bent, but he namechecked that Marty Moore, Tadhg Furlong, and Jack McGrath could all swap sides if needed.

When asked if there were positions he still hadn't decided the main answer was at front row. Schmidt lamented the injuries to Rhys Ruddock and Tommy O'Donnell, but acknowledged that Jack Conan had been pushing hard.


Ireland Team To Play Wales This Saturday:

1. Jack McGrath
2. Richardt Strauss
3. Nathan White
4. Iain Henderson
5. Paul O'Connell (c)
6. Peter O'Mahony
7. Jordi Murphy
8. Jamie Heaslip
9. Conor Murray
10. Jonathan Sexton
11. Keith Earls
12. Robbie Henshaw
13. Luke Fitzgerald
14. Dave Kearney
15. Rob Kearney

16. Sean Cronin
17. Dave Kilcoyne
18. Tadhg Furlong
19. Donnacha Ryan
20. Sean O'Brien
21. Eoin Reddan
22. Paddy Jackson
23. Felix Jones

See Also: World Cup Winning Coach Thinks Ireland Are Mounting A Serious Title Bid
See Also: Former England Rugby Captain Doesn't Think Much Of Ireland's Squad Depth

Picture credit: Matt Browne / SPORTSFILE


Join The Monday Club Have a tip or something brilliant you wanted to share on? We're looking for loyal Balls readers free-to-join members club where top tipsters can win prizes and Balls merchandise

Processing your request...

You are subscribed now!

Share this article

Copyright © 2023. All rights reserved. Developed by Square1 and powered by PublisherPlus.com